For those who are newer to the world of medical cannabis, and even for some who have been involved for a while, there are a few general terms that take some getting used to. From classifications like sativa and indica to strain names and a few other areas, there’s a small learning curve for those looking to learn more about these products.
At Whole Leaf Medical Dispensary and CBD, we’re proud to not only provide high-quality products ranging from edible cannabis and traditional flower to vape cartridges and other types, but also to offer expertise and explainers on any terms or themes you’re unsure of. One important element to be aware of is known as a “terpene” – what are terpenes, how do they impact cannabis and how can they benefit you? This two-part blog will dig into everything you need to know about terpenes.
Similar to cannabinoids, terpenes are elements produced by resin glands inside the trichomes of the leaves and buds of a marijuana plant. These trichomes are crystalline appendages that play a big role in the chemical composition of the plant.
Terpenes, however, are the primary driver of flavors and aromas that come with medical cannabis. They’re what make certain strains fruit, other strains citrus-y, and still others a variety of other flavor combinations. Each different strain of cannabis comes with its own unique terpene combination.
Terpenes are not only found in marijuana plants – they are incredibly common in nature, and actually comprise the single largest class of naturally occurring organic compounds on earth. They’re found in virtually all plants, fruits and vegetables, and are particularly common in aromatherapy products like essential oils.
Terpenes aren’t only present to improve aromas, however. They’re also vital to many plants in terms of protection and regeneration, repelling insects and predators while attracting pollinators.
Getting back to cannabis, there are over 100 different terpenes that can be found in the marijuana plant. There are a handful that are found in much larger quantities – these are known as “primary terpenes” such as bisabolol, humulene, limonene and many others.
When talking about the therapeutic benefits of cannabis, it’s most common to focus on cannabinoids like THC and CBD. But these are not the only beneficial elements in the plant – many terpenes actually act like cannabinoids in many ways, interacting with the brain’s receptors to relieve pain and inflammation. Most major terpenes have either anti-inflammatory or pain relief qualities, and some have both simultaneously.
To learn more about terpenes and how they impact your medical cannabis, or for information on any of our medical dispensary services, speak to the staff at Whole Leaf Medical Dispensary and CBD today.